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McCarthy 'fed up' with Thompson's free-agency approach, per report

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The Packers' head coach reportedly wants his boss to acquire more veteran talent.

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For innumerable fans, the unwillingness of Green Bay Packers general manager Ted Thompson to sign veteran free agents has become a source of angst. As it turns out, they may have company from one of the highest-ranking members of the team. According to the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel's Bob McGinn, Packers head coach Mike McCarthy is "fed up" with Thompson's general avoidance of veteran free agents.

While McGinn notes that Thompson regularly assembles quality rosters, he points out that certain holes remain every year. In particular, the Packers have lacked quality inside linebackers since Desmond Bishop suffered a torn hamstring in the 2012 preseason. The team tried to work with developmental talents like Jamari Lattimore and Nate Palmer with little success. Though the front office did draft Jake Ryan, the Michigan linebacker who started a handful of games down the stretch this season, the absence of better options forced the coaching staff to move Clay Matthews inside rather than utilize him as a full-time pass rusher.

In contrast, Washington's Scot McCloughan, a fellow Ron Wolf disciple, signed proven veteran Mason Foster to a minimum contract midway through the season. Foster won the starting job and finished the year with 37 tackles and a forced fumble. Though not overwhelming numbers, it seems likely he could have played ahead of several linebackers the Packers rolled out during 2015.

Still, it bears mentioning that Thompson hasn't totally eschewed veteran free agents in recent years. In 2014, he signed Julius Peppers to a three-year, team-friendly deal shortly after the future Hall of Famer received his walking papers from the Chicago Bears. Peppers made an instant impact, registering 7 1/2 sacks, four forced fumbles and two pick-sixes during his first season in Green Bay.

That same year, the Packers also signed free agent Letroy Guion to add depth along the defensive interior. After starting nose tackle B.J. Raji went down with a torn biceps later in the preseason, Guion took over and largely played well in his place.

Thompson almost certainly has no intention of making big flashes in free agency this offseason. However, if his head coach feels it necessary to bring in more veteran talent, the possibility exists that the Green Bay GM could shift his approach to a degree. Not all free-agent acquisitions come at a steep cost, and incorporating a few more experienced players could help the perennially young Packers shore up some deficiencies. In that way, the team can continue to lean on its draft-and-develop philosophy without suffering when a prospect or two inevitably fails to live up to expectations.

Jason B. Hirschhorn covers the Green Bay Packers for Acme Packing Company. He also serves as an NFL writer for SB Nation and Sports on Earth and is a member of the Pro Football Writers of America.